<body><script type="text/javascript"> function setAttributeOnload(object, attribute, val) { if(window.addEventListener) { window.addEventListener('load', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }, false); } else { window.attachEvent('onload', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }); } } </script> <div id="navbar-iframe-container"></div> <script type="text/javascript" src="https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript"> gapi.load("gapi.iframes:gapi.iframes.style.bubble", function() { if (gapi.iframes && gapi.iframes.getContext) { gapi.iframes.getContext().openChild({ url: 'https://www.blogger.com/navbar.g?targetBlogID\x3d14082245\x26blogName\x3dRelease+the+Good\x26publishMode\x3dPUBLISH_MODE_BLOGSPOT\x26navbarType\x3dBLUE\x26layoutType\x3dCLASSIC\x26searchRoot\x3dhttp://releasethegood.blogspot.com/search\x26blogLocale\x3den_US\x26v\x3d2\x26homepageUrl\x3dhttp://releasethegood.blogspot.com/\x26vt\x3d-3557989439635944533', where: document.getElementById("navbar-iframe-container"), id: "navbar-iframe" }); } }); </script>

Friday, July 29, 2005

Bruderhof's "Todaily" Dig...

What Then?
Kristian Ostergaard

That cause can never be lost nor stayed
which takes the course of what God has made;
and is not trusting in walls and towers,
but slowly growing from seeds to flowers.

Each noble service that has been wrought
was first conceived as a fruitful thought;
each worthy cause with a future glorious
by quietly growing becomes victorious.

Thereby itself like a tree it shows:
that high it reaches, as deep it grows;
and when the storms are its branches shaking,
it deeper root in the soil is taking.

Be then no more by a storm dismayed,
for by it the full grown seeds are laid;
and though the tree by its might it shatters,
what then, if thousands of seeds it scatters?

There was a link to the following short story. What a wonderful way to wake up!
http://www.bruderhof.com/articles/TheStorm.htm?source=DailyDig

Enjoy!

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Living Together God...

Once again, while cuddling my littlest to sleep, I was touched with the innocence of childlike truth.

Z was singing "Children of the Living God" with Fernando Ortega. (He was on the cd player...) She sang, "Children of the living God, come and sing, sing out loud, children of the living God, sing to the living together God."

My heart burst with laughter and delight. She was not trying to be funny or cute; so I did not let on how her words affected me, but I LOVE what she said.

Is it not the whole point? God lives with us and we can live with each other. We have an in-community, three-in-one, living together God.

Children of the living together God, SING to the LIVING God!!!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

O.k., Forget Conciseness!!!

More on Heidi,

I CAN'T talk about Heidi and NOT mention her relationship with her Grandfather. A man whose good heart is hard due to years of bitterness; it is beautiful to see the effect Heidi has upon him. Her beautiful, unselfish heart and strength and fearlessness to tell the truth cause her Grandfather to change YEARS of wrong, unsocial behavior. After she comes back from the city, there is a MOST holy, beautiful moment when Heidi innocently and naively leads her Grandfather to understand and receive that there is forgiveness for everyone no matter what they have done. It is beautiful. Simply beautiful.

I think that is it...

Heidi Questioned Answered...

I was recently asked why I like the book Heidi. I want to be VERY clear that I am talking about the BOOK Heidi; not the movie. I love the story of Heidi because it shows a little girl learning the Truth that suffering brings blessing; if we allow God to be in charge of it and do not try to run away from it.

Also, through this story I received gentle teaching of the image of God as the Good Father, who is so wise that he knows that it would hurt us worse to find out that he gave us anything that was not best for us, just because we wanted it, when we wanted it. I saw how "no" can be SUCH a loving word.

We fell in love with the goats. Our little family STILL loves to walk around saying, "Schnayherpley, Bearly, schvenley... (We "read" this as a book on tape, so I am spelling the names phonetically)

My love for this book may also have been because of the warm, grandfatherly, molasses-y voice of John McDonaugh. (I am BEGGING God that someone will record him reading the Bible. He would be wonderful at it. You can get a taste of it in the Jan Karon Mitford series when she quotes scripture. He gives a poetic, beautiful reading FULL of intimacy.) Anyway.

My favorite part of Heidi is when she comes back to live on the mountain and begins to realize how much she has to give to those she loves (and how each of her prayers have been answered, more than she knew to pray) because she had been taken to Strausburg (I think that's the city, it's been awhile since we listened to this). When the final and miraculous thing happens she glories in God and basically says, "It is true! He is the Good Father! He has made me able to give and help as I wanted."

Also, it was good teaching for me to compare and contrast Frau Rottenmaier and the Grandmama. Frau Rottenmaier is the one who makes Heidi suffer horribly because she does not understand children and is a wicked, Pharisaical, control freak. Her character can be summed up in the following bit of remembered conversation,

"What is your name, child?", asked Frau Rottenmaier.

"Heidi."

"Heidi!! That is NO Christian name! It is barely pronounceable!! We will call you "Audelheight". (Just try to pronounce that!! I have even given it phonetically!!)

Nebecanezzer renamed Daniel as well. I rest my case!!

The Grandmama, though, was wise and discerning and knew how to hear the heart of children and how to approach, give space, teach, be silent. As a mom, I was SO grateful to receive who her character was; begging God to make me more like that.

There was also WONDERFUL, CLEAR teaching on how our consciences work, through the event of the boy pushing the wheelchair down the mountain. As we listened to this book I could FEEL my children receiving (truly, going RIGHT into them) these wonderful Truths that were so clearly and gently revealed in the story. I remember praying to God that he would teach me/make me to be so simple and clear.... it has not happened yet, I am afraid.

Does that answer your question, Sleeping With Bread?
(There are a lot more things I could say, but I am TRYING to be concise. I do not think it worked!!)

Monday, July 25, 2005

Choking...

More clarification on my last blog... it's not so much how often, it is more like fear. I have things well up in my heart and then they all shove into the bottle neck of writing and I choke... and I find myself self-conscious of what everyone will think of "this" or "that". I worry about leaving comments and if the person will understand my heart...
and (I admit it!!!) I want to know what they think of my comments I leave (sometimes).
That kind of stuff.

I have also found it hard to stay present here at home. My thoughts are constantly wandering to whether or not I have comments, who has new blogs... I need to find the balance here.

I think there is a nagging fear that if I do not "keep up" then people will leave me behind.

I wanted to plop this all out here to break the shame and silence to try to be free to have FUN here again.

Thanks for your responses.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Testing...

Whoah. I've hit a funk. I have hit a blog block and just writing this is my trying to break it. I have been reading other's blogs and their comments and I have wanted to comment a lot; but then, somehow I just can't. And now I am finding myself lacking courage to blog period. So. Here is my attempt to break it. I hope it works.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

A Nagging Question...

So. There has been a question/wondering floating around me that is driving me nuts. So, I am thinking maybe it would be fun to see what bloggers think (especially theologically minded ones).

I am wondering about the relational dynamics between God and angels and humans. If God's Spirit is everywhere and meets with us directly, what does he need or use angels for? Why have them? I mean NO disrespect to angels; I am just really wondering why they are there and why does God send them sometimes and sometimes do things Himself... this is really bugging me...

What do you think?

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

In the boat

So, for a little while, I have been in an interesting place in my prayerful imagination with Christ. I keep seeing us in a boat and a storm is raging all around. I am standing next to him, touching him, holding onto his robe and I am watching him rule the wind and the waves. Almost like watching a movie with him, but he is causing everything to happen. I love it. I am in awe and wonder watching his Authority and Power and Justice. I keep having this expectant feeling that I will begin to understand and see things; like I will get to know him more intimately. I would really like that. I would really like to stretch and grow. There is such an incredible peace that fills me.

There are wind and waves in my life right now; and this picture is about that. The wind and waves are a burden and I feel them, but it is different than other times. I am finding myself able to remain quite calm and peaceful and held in a new way. I am able to stay present in the moment I am in and am able to be prayerful in my heart about the wind and waves. This is interesting and new for me. I wonder how long it will last...

Monday, July 18, 2005

O Christ (A Prayer)

O Christ
O Christ, you calm the storm at sea;
In tempest sore, be calming me.
O Christ, you walk upon the waves;
When sinking fast, my footing save.
O Christ, the stricken child you raise;
My spirit lift in joy and praise.
O Christ, you heal the man born blind;
Make bright the darkness in my mind.
O Christ, you feed the crowd with bread;
With words of truth let me be fed.
O Christ, you make the water wine;
Take humble gifts and make them fine.
O Christ, the Resurrection Morn;
With your new life, mine adorn.
Joyce Denham

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Prayer Call in Blogland...

One of the dearest and closest families to my heart is trying to fly home from Slovakia, where they have lived for the past year, tonight. Their flight from Washington D.C. is now almost 4 hours late. They have not slept and to them it is 2:30 a.m. Please, if anyone reads this post tonight, please pray for them. Pray for strength and endurance. Their children are 9, 5 and 3. They are absolutely exhausted. Pray for a miracle, for people to help and support them on their way. When Dad called, he was so exhausted. I wished I could "beam" over and help them through.

Thank you.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Are Three Posts a Day Legal?

So. I have been soaking in George MacDonald's fairytales lately. I have been reading Leanne Payne's "Real Presence" as well. I have entered blogland and have been trying to "swim to the surface" there... Today, they all converged.

Judy Hougen had a post, recently, where she pondered and posed the question "why do we blog?" Before today, I would have said, "Easy. For me it is because I am a stay-at-home mom and I am tired of cornering adults when I can and downloading all I am reading/learning/thinking onto them." Blogging has been for me a perfect answer to that problem. My thoughts get air, I get a sense of community and I am still able to be fully present here, at home. I can pause blogworld when things need attention here; and the peace of home is maintained. But that answer did not fully plumb the depths of blogging for me. After my musings today, I think I am getting there.

To me, blogging is like walking in Fairyland. It accesses that part of me that is constantly wondering and percolating and walking with God all day, but does not always get to the surface OR get to be expressed to other people. People in blogland are "disembodied" and not as tangible as when we are together in person; sort of like feeling a fairy in a flower, but not being able to actually see it. I feel like my walking in blogland is helping me to strengthen my inuitive journey; to walk not so much by sight, how someone's face may look after I say something, but to walk more in being and trust, letting the feedback come as it will. John Eldredge's words, "be who you are and let others deal with it," (from "Wild at Heart", I think) has come to mind a lot as I journey here.

It has also made me more aware of the separation and interplay of the unconscious and conscious minds of myself. To sense and understand which one may be at work; and to see their mutual benefits.

Anyway. This has gotten rambly and somewhat confusing, but isn't that the way in Fairyland?

Whoops, still figuring things out...

Man. I always forget to give the url...

http://tendingto.blogspot.com/

Thank you for your patience as I figure out how to fly!!

Old Friend - New Blogger

Yeah!!! I am SO excited. One of my deepest and dearest friends just joined blogland. This is great. I want to share her with all of you. She is a Twin Cities flower doing some time in Seattle. She is deep, raw and lovely.

Blogland reminds me of lighting candles off of one candle at the Easter Vigil Baptism service. Look how easy the disease is catching!! We can take over blogland and then the world -- Come Great Light of the World!

Monday, July 11, 2005

Childhood Books

So, this weekend i was cleaning out our storage closet and re-organizing it. In so doing, i came across two big boxes of books from my parent's house. My childhood books. Actually, my young adult books. The books i read to myself. It was amazing the effect they had on me. i felt like i was touching my soul like it was my body. i was impacted by each cover i came across. i could see where i was when i read them, i could feel the texture of each book. Then i remembered.

i remembered the day my mom handed me "To Kill A Mockingbird" by Harper Lee. It was such a boring looking copy. Yellow with red letters... not even a picture to intrigue me. And i was in my earliest teens; totally resistant and rebellious to my mother's direction. But. i was in my grandma's car and we had a roadtrip ahead of us; and this was the book in my hand. i can feel the blue sky outside the car window. i was seated behind the driver. i opened the book... and thus began a love affair with one book. There was awhile where i re-read that book every couple years or so. i can't wait to give it to my kids. i am having to "sit on my hands" to keep me from handing it to my eight-year-old.

Anyway. i have been in awe and wonderment about the impact on me of these old books. They really are people to me. i have remet my younger self in discovering them. i am suddenly present to how my younger heart felt as i walked through each book. They were such a place of safety and refuge for me. i also came across my whole Marguerite Henry series. The books are thick papered, oversized with wonderful illustrations throughout; nothing like the modern, cheap copies i got for my kids.

A beautiful book is a treasure.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

He Visits AND Redeems

"Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people..." (Luke 1:68a... Zachariah's first words after John the Baptist was born.)

"...'Steadfast love will be built up forever; in the heavens you will establish your faithfulness.'" (Psalm 89:1)

These verses are so close they are scary to me. It is all good, and yet I am terrified by the hugeness, vastness... of God. A few weekends ago, I met with my parents, my husband and our counselor. We had had a similar meeting about 2 years ago; and a month ago my parents called and initiated another meeting. Hello ambivalence. My mom told me over the phone that when we had finished the first meetings a few years ago, she felt God had told them that it was not done and that some day we would need to meet again. So, she calls last month and tells me (I knew nothing of this) that they think that God told them it was time to meet. All the info. she could give me was that God wanted to lift off a generational curse... a huge generational curse.

So. We meet. The hugeness of what was happening was such that our counselor told me that I would probably need to start meeting with him again and that I definitely could NOT go on a biking trip with my parents after this. But God had other plans. I am absolutely stunned at what God can do when people are faithful to listen and obey what they feel he is telling them. (My parents listened and obeyed for two years and made it possible for miraculous things to happen) At the end of the weekend our counselor was stunned. He looked at me and said, "it is time to fire your therapist." My parents humbly walked through FIRE to reclaim our generations.

As we talked, we began to realize that God had been speaking to us (my family) about this for years... EVEN BEFORE I WAS BORN. There is a chapter in Isaiah that we had been sensing was God's speaking to us about 7 years ago... in the middle of the chapter is a verse that someone gave to my mom in high school as her "life verse."

So. The above verses. God was moving in His concern for me and my families life before I was physically here. I have fretted, I have whined, I have screamed... I have been all over the place and He was steadfastly loving and ALWAYS moving in faithfulness towards me.

Even though I have just written a bunch of words... I have no words for this. He is beautiful;
and He can do anything He wants.

p.s. We went on the bike trip.

Friday, July 08, 2005

A Little Context...

O.k. A little context to my last entry. It is 4:18 and i just got my shower. If mama ain't showered ain't nobody happy!!!

No Deep Thoughts

Well. No deep thoughts from me today, although at the beginning of the day i thought they would come -- but then life overtook me and i have had a shitty day. It is one of those days where i am appalled with my kids and i look at them and what they are doing and i feel that eveything i have done is for naught. Things were so thin that i was desperate for our habitual afternoon privacy time. Then Zion (2 1/2) came down, just as i was sinking into the couch to relax with "Mama, I NEED you." Oh Lord, give me strength. i did pretty well hiding my irritation and i made it upstairs to lay on her bed with her. Soon i felt the rest coming to me. i wondered if i should just take a nap with her. Zion was sing-songing to herself a conversation... "Z - o - n... no it's Z - o - n... not Z - o - n..."; arguing with an imaginary friend. It was so happy and silly and light that my heart lifted. On crabby Mommy day this little one still has love and lightness around her. I felt held beyond myself.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

My husband sent a correction to my "Over the Threshold" blog. I wrote that I was, "waiting for my wizard computer husband to make me a gorgeous spot" and he sent me the following changes, "... my gorgeous husband to make me a wizard computer spot..." So. This is my retraction of my previous statement and please fill in with my husband's changes!!

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Biking Community

We just got back from a cycling vacation. What a great time. This year I really noticed that we were living in a community. We lived with about 20 to 30 other people for about a week. We bike all day to our campgrounds. We eat together and we all camp together; each family in their own tent, but all next to each other. It was amazing.

Our children lived in a new level of freedom. There were kids a little older than they who took them with themselves. Also, these older kids were biking and biking and I watched our kids begin to push themselves and bike like them. One boy biked for 100 miles (a "century"). If I remember right, this boy is 11 years old. Wow. Inspired, our son biked 55 miles one day, some on his own bike and some on a trail-a-bike. Our son is 8 years-old. Kids can do AMAZING things.

I was really amazed to watch how people gave and shared and helped each other. If someone had a need, then who ever could; helped. People gave us food when we did not have enough, fixed our bikes when we couldn't, watched our kids so that my husband and I could have a "biking date". I was grieved to see how much selfishness is still in me. Being in such a giving environment starkly showed me my graspishness. I am determined to fight selfishness to death in me. The giving and sharing was so beautiful to see and was a gift to experience.
These people did not talk about it; they just did it. Lord. Make me more like that!!